Malawi Congress Party (MCP) has dragged the public broadcaster Malawi Broadcasting Corporation (MBC) and Malawi Communications Regulatory Authority (Macra) for biased broadcasting as well as seeking an injunction against specific programs it airs with hate messages.
A summon obtained on Thursday at High Court of Malawi, Lilongwe district registry under civil cause 254, MCP is claiming various reliefs among them a declaration that the defendants to provide them inequitable treatment, that MBC conduct is unconscionable and amounts to breach of their fiduciary duties to the general public.
And that Macra as the first defendant is in breach of its constitutional mandate imposed under section 193(3) of the country’s constitution.
The summon, seen by Nyasa Times further demand a mandatory order compelling the defendant to provide equitable treatment to MCP and its political leaders in the same manner as the same is provided to the governing political party of Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) or any other party groups whose objects are, tacitly and or expressly political in nature but favoring the ruling party.
The party, through Mvalo and Company legal practitioners wants a prohibitory order restraining MBC from producing, broadcasting and or publishing never again/sapita kawiri, Manifesto. Chindunji, Kauniuni and Malawi pa Chitukuko 2014-2019 programs.
The prohibitory order further targets other program or music whose object are to promote or undermine the interest of any political party or member of that political party.
MCP also seeks “a quashing order invalidating any decisions in respect of production, broadcasting or publication of programs, commentary or news items already made by the defendants whose object are to promote or undermine the interest of any political party or member of that political party.”
It further seeks an order for the defendants to issue a public apology and admission of wrong doing to Malawians generally and MCP in particular for the prejudice caused as a result of the breach of their constitutional and statutory duties and that the said apology and admission be carried by way of public notices in at least two newspapers with the widest national circulation and by way of news items, commentary and public advertisement bon all its platforms.
The defendants have been given 28 days to respond.
MBC and Macra management are yet to comment on the summons .